Is business booming? Your guide to outsourcing

Outsourcing to a third-party provider can be a viable option if your business needs skilled support. Not only can this approach be a cost-effective solution, but it can also fill niche skill gaps. Marketing, information technology (IT), human resources (HR) and payroll, are a few common areas businesses outsource.

If your business is heading down the outsourcing track, it pays to tick your legal boxes before engaging a service provider. We have put together a quick guide for you consider.

Assess your business needs

Firstly, before you jump on the outsourcing bandwagon, assess your situation. Weigh up the different hiring options and decide what will work best for your business (financially, culturally and operationally).

Ask yourself things like:

  • What skills do I need in a provider?

  • What work do I need help with, and how often?

  • Is this a remote role?

  • What is the financial cost of outsourcing versus employing?

Shop around

Secondly, if you decide that outsourcing is the right fit for your business, consider investigating multiple service providers to find the right fit. It can be helpful to:

  • Chat with other business owners, networks and people you know and trust - for example, your local Chamber of Commerce and affiliated businesses.

  • Check out a service provider's website and social media channels. You want to get a feel for who they are and how they work. Additionally, Google and Facebook reviews, and website testimonials can also be helpful.

  • Book a meeting or consultation. Speak with them about what you need to find out if they might be a good fit.

Sign a contract

So, you've decided outsourcing is the right move for your business. What next? Well, you need a well-formed contract between your business and the service provider. Don't rely solely on a verbal agreement – no matter how small the scope of work may seem.

A comprehensive contract will outline the terms of your agreement and reference essential clauses and information, such as:

  • The rights and responsibilities of both parties.

  • Pricing and payment terms.

  • The scope of the work.

  • Confidentiality and privacy.

  • Data and Intellectual property.

  • Non-compete clauses and governing law.

Consider chatting with a lawyer to draft or review any contracts before you sign them to protect your best interests.

Adopt a coordinated approach

After you review and sign a contract, consider how you will work with the provider for the contract's duration.

Think about implementing a communication process, including progress checks or regular meetings. In the beginning, when you are getting to know each other, regular communication can be crucial.

If your contract is likely to extend past the contractual date, make sure you set a reminder to review and negotiate a new contract before this date passes. Likewise, if a contract is for a fixed term, such as for a project, setting a reminder before the end date can help ensure you remain on top of your obligations.

Do you need some legal help understanding what's involved with outsourcing or need a hand with your contracts? Contact our experienced team today for a no-obligation quote.

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